Another person in Georgia has fallen victim to the rare “flesh-eating” disease – necrotizing fasciitis. Paul Bales has lost his leg to an infection that entered his body through a cut that he received while swimming in an outdoor water source.
This latest infection has left Bales’ neighbors terrified to wade into Lake Sinclair.
Bales is the fourth victim of the virulent bacteria in the state, though doctors insist that the cases are unrelated. Aimee Copeland’s sickness received immense publicity after she was forced to undergo several amputations as a result of her infection. She continues to recover in an area hospital along with the other two victims.
Paul Bales son Mike Bales told the TV station WGXA that his father didn’t pay the wound much thought after he emerged from Lake Sinclair.
“It was a very small cut,” said the younger Bales. “Matter of fact he just bandaged it up and then went and played golf for the next couple of days.”
Sadly, within four days of the injury the elder Bales’ leg began to swell and cause him serious enough pain that he went in to the doctor. Within a week he was transferred to Medical Center of Central Georgia for more advanced treatment.
The infection rate is beginning to cause panic across the state of Georgia. Mike Bales told WGXA that over the last three decades there have been only about 200 confirmed cases of necrotizing fasciitis nationwide. Four in one state in one month certainly represents some kind of uptick, though perhaps not a statistically significant one. The younger Bales is neither a doctor nor an epidemiologist.